By Vicki Irvin
After having my son and taking some time off from work to be with him, I found myself completely overwhelmed and disillusioned at the end of each day. Having a baby was supposed to be a joyous occasion. However, I was trying to do way too much. I had just moved into a gorgeous new home and was adamant that I could manage the house, a baby and anything else that came my way. Yup, it was the superwoman syndrome rearing its ugly head again.
With my newborn napping, I remember sweeping my brand new shiny hardwood floors. I was so proud. Suddenly, I broke down in tears. It came from nowhere and hit me like a ton of bricks. I was crying for no apparent reason with a broom in my hand and couldn't figure out why. At that very moment, I knew I couldn't handle it all alone.
After the effects of sleep deprivation began to wear off, I decided to take some time to reflect on what I was doing wrong. With some serious soul searching and being completely honest with myself, it hit me. I realized that I was running a race. I was desperately trying to catch up to other women who I perceived to be living a Superwoman Lifestyle to perfection.
We all have those friends who are supermoms that we admire from a far. You know the ones. They run their businesses. They whip up great meals and never miss a single soccer game. Meanwhile, we are lucky if we manage a TV dinner.
While there is nothing wrong with admiring other people, we must be careful. We get ourselves into trouble when we expect to have the exact same results or experiences as these women. After all, we don't know the details of how they got there or how long it took them to get their life on a system.
We often forget that most people don't have overnight success. It is typically a long process of ups and downs, failures and struggles. We only see them when they "appear" on the scene all polished and shiny. Sadly, we are left feeling inadequate.
My reflections helped me to realize that women are born with a natural inherent instinct to multi-task and manage. We have been doing this since the beginning of time as the matriarchs of our families. To fight or go against this is unnatural. That is why I believe telling us to give up the superwoman mentality is a lost cause. It's just not going to happen.
Instead of going against it, I say embrace it. Celebrate the fact that we are able to wear so many different hats. Let's use it to our advantage not only in life, but in business as well.
The superwoman lifestyle truly is attainable once we define what that means to us individually. It's attainable when we stop trying to be someone we are not. The dynamics of our lives are all different and we can only operate within the realm of our own existence.
Once we acknowledge our strengths and weaknesses we are free to be authentic. We will be better equipped to leverage the knowledge and expertise of others as well as use the power of systems.
After the complete meltdown I had as a result of being off balance, I quickly hired a housekeeper to assist me with running the house. I enlisted the help of others when needed. I found a system for my life and the results were immediate. Problem solved.
Waking up each day without a plan of action or system in place is like running around on a wild goose chase. It is certainly no way to build, grow or sustain a healthy thriving life or business. And that is something that we all deserve. Without systems, you will indeed feel burnt out and frustrated. Frustration leads to self-doubt and soon the self-sabotage will follow.
I figured if I could put my life on a system to help me do the heavy lifting, I could and should do the same in my business. Employing similar concepts, I was able to design a basic process to grow a list of qualified prospects. It was on auto-pilot and working for me every day. The wild goose chase was over and the opt ins were rolling in!
So before giving up or pulling your hair out, make sure you put some basic proven systems in place that will work consistently for you in your business.
Here are three simple ways to systemize your business that will give you a core foundation and assist you in continued growth and profit:
#1. Make sure you conduct market research and hone in on who your target market really is. When working with my clients, I find very few who ever bother to do this step, which can be a fatal mistake. Assuming you already know is a dangerous game. There are so many sub sets and demographics of people and they all need to be drilled down to the core. Let's face it, marketing dollars are precious. Spending time and money talking to the wrong market using the wrong medias will leave you broke.
Start by looking at your competitors who are successful to see what's working. Chances are if they are consistently spending money some place, that is a clue it is working.
Make sure you are talking to people who can afford you. Gather salary information and determine what income bracket can support your products and services. Additionally, knowing the habits and hot buttons of your ideal client will assist you in writing compelling messages that resonate. The more ammunition you gather, the better your chances of becoming a 'must have' in their eyes.
#2. Make sure you set up opt in pages that deliver a clear and concise message about how you can solve the issues and problems of prospects. At the end of the day, all your market really wants to know is what is in it for them. Your pages should offer your prospects something of value in exchange for their contact information. Your offer should be something that is congruent and in line with your product or service. There is nothing worse than pushing a complimentary gift that has nothing at all to do with the offer. It will hurt your conversion and your reputation.
You now need a way to drive traffic to your page so that you can begin to build your list and develop rapport with your prospects. Using social media to drive traffic is a great and zero cost way to get new prospects to hop on your list. When using social media, always remember people are there to socialize first. Never be intrusive. Add some personality to it, build a relationship and give people great value. Doing so will spark their curiosity to the point they want more of you. If you do this consistently there will come a day that they will jump ship from the social media site and join your herd.
#3. Now that you are steadily building your list, you have to create products, services and offers according to the wants and desires of your market. Never assume you know what your prospects need. People make buying decisions based on wants and not needs. While your intentions may be good, it's wiser to listen to what they tell you. There is nothing worse than spending time, money and energy on products that nobody buys. Survey your list. Talk to your prospects and clients and find out what gap you can fill in the marketplace for them. Based on your findings, create your products accordingly. Handling the process this way helps to increase your conversion.
So the next time someone asks you just how you get it all done in business, beauty and balance, let them know you have figured out how to live an authentic superwoman lifestyle by leveraging the power of systems.
Vicki Irving is the author of The Superwoman Lifestyle Blueprint and has coached over 2,000 people on how to increase their wealth, boost their business and leverage the power of systems. Her passion is assisting women entrepreneurs profit from their expertise without burning themselves out. Vicki has been featured on Lifetime TV, CNN's HLN Prime News, USA Today, Bloomberg Radio, the Investor's Business Daily, Essence Magazine, Hearpreneur and Millionaire Blueprint Magazine.